Inheritance and wills

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    Inheritance and wills

    I am probably asking in the wrong place but I thought someone may have a idea?

    My grandmother died this year and my dad her eldest son died back in 2006.

    I was told a few years after my dad died by her that she changed her so that my uncle her other son would get half the house and the other half me and my sister would share. She got ill about 3 years again and pulled through so my uncle set up some sort of trust that he was in charge of. Apparently it was to reduce or get round the inheritance tax? I remember reading it and then get some friends to look at it and we all agreeded it looked fine so I signed it (Ihave no copy). Now about a year before my grandmother died my uncle said there was a letter of 'covenant' that cancels out the will? I looked online and asked around but no one really knew what it meant so I didn't really question it with him as I thought at the end of the day whatever happens I will be treated fairly. Now I phoned him last week to see how he was and straight away he said 'was there anything in particular your after?' which then has made me suspicious? He then came out and said its all in probate still and will take about 6-8 weeks to sort out. And he asked for me and my sisters date of birth.

    I spoke to my sister about it and she wasn't to bothered as it won't bring them back (I wish I could be like that) but she thinks we now get nothing and she and my grandmother had a talk about it. Why she never told me until now I don't know.

    I'm wondering what I should do? I was going to wait until mid Jan and if I don't here anything then I was going to ask him to see the will or if something has changed why? and why wasn't I told?

    My issue is he split from his partner about 7-8 years ago who he had a child with and left them in his house as he didn't want to chuck his son out his home and my uncle pays everything for them. Then 5 years ago he stupidly had another child and he is not with the mother of that kid. So with all these out goings he lived with his mum so he could pay for both of them. That's fine but I would either like the house sold so we get our fair share or he buys us out.

    If this letter or something has canceled out the will then have I lost out? Thing is if he drops down dead tomorrow that would mean his kids get it? Its not like he got sick and fell on hard times. He could sell both homes and he and his ex's could either get the money or just have to down size.

    Would anyone know how it all works? I feel I should questioned this years ago but I thought to myself no one would do me out of it. And my uncle and dad were very close. But now it looks to me he will have 2 houses and we get nothing

    You would need professional advice about the specific situation, and probably the cooperation of your uncle.

    The probate process will involve a solicitor, and is the normal process of establishing what your grandmother owned and which is the correct will to follow (I don't know what a "letter of covenant" is meant to mean, but people do change their mind and there may be more than one will - there shouldn't be but it happens).

    The trust will have more than one trustee - so there'll be someone else other than your uncle involved in the trust as well. The idea of a trust is usually to remove something (in this case the house) from someone's estate, so it isn't subject to inheritance tax.
    If it was 3 years (or less) ago it won't have worked, 3-4 years would have saved 20% of any tax due.

    In a will it's normally set out who gets what if one of the original beneficiaries has died. But if your uncle has already inherited something and then drops dead, their own will would decide where their property goes.
    When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
    Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).


      OP really needs to get professional advice.


        Thanks for the advice. Your right this so called 'letter' sounds strange to me. I will wait then up until the new year still and then ask if he hasn't said anything before hand.


          Hard to give you any advise, we would need to see what you have signed, how trust set up, the will etc etc

          Unfortunately it sound that your uncle having financial pressure, he is trying to cut you and you sister out of the inheritance.

          I have had similar situation in the family, very sad I must say, especially if people are just doing it because they are stingy and only after more and more money at any price, that at least does not sound your uncle per se.

          If I were you, I would invite you uncle for a coffee and talk openly, directly, and ask what is going in on and to give you a full explanation, with calm and politeness and no judgement etc


            I'm actually thinking your uncle might have had the 'title deeds' of the house changed. If he had, this would overwrite anything that was written in the Will. I have seen this done to my poor cousin recently. Her dad believes she will benefit from his estate via his Will, but his devious girlfriend tricked him into putting the house in 'joint names' with her. Basically this means on his death - he is 30 years older, the property becomes hers solely. Sadly, my Uncle is too ignorant to believe that his Will is no longer valid.

            If he has had them changed and your nan didn't take legal advice, I believe you will have a much stronger case to have her Will upheld in your favour. Don't wait till New Year - do as suggested and invite your uncle out to talk.


              You got me thinking now?

              Well going off subject a bit I have another question along the same lines.

              My wife is having a minor operation next week and was getting worried so she dug her will out and realized she didn't do a new one like I thought she did.

              Its a weird situation and ill try and keep it brief.

              We got married 9 years ago and when we meet she was having 2 flats built next door to her to rent out as she already lived above her shop. I came along and at the time she was a little reluctant to put me on the mortgage of her flat as I was still living at home but I had a little bit of money. The building work cost double the original amount so she had to sell one so just before we got married she sold the cheapest one to me so at least she had some sort of control of it and I could get on the ladder. I always said from day one we will move one day and buy a place together but we would never sell any of the flats.

              As time has got on and the house prices have gone up we could not afford to buy what we wanted so in the end we did a lot of work to her flat which I paid for most of it and we have more or less said we are never moving.

              In her will she left our flat which is in her name to her brother,sister and mother along with the shop and business. And her rental one to me.

              She thought she changed it to the one we live in is mine and the rest goes to her family. So if anything happened to her could they chuck me out if they wanted to even tho I pay her each month money for it and invested money in the place and been living in it a good while?

              She has said in the past ill put your name on the flat but I just never bothered as you just trust each other.

              She wants them all to have a rental income and keep it all in the family so she wants me to have our flat and them the renta flat with the shopl. Trouble is I don't trust her sister plus she is stupid. I can't see her paying tax or maintaining the flat etc and I think because she a complete control freak just freeze her brother out and mess it all up. Plus ill be living next door and being dragged into any drama.

              I thought a better idea was to say give me a year to sort my affairs out if she died then just sell it all and dived the money between me her sisters 2 kids and her brothers 1 kid. Again the way her sister is if she made any money on this flat she would spend it all and her kids would be left with nothing but debt


                The property will be distributed in line with your wife's will, so, on the face of it, the property you live in would belong to her family.

                It would take several month's for the estate to be sorted, which would probably allow you plenty of time to move out.

                It sounds like you and your wife want different things to happen after her death.
                That can be difficult to resolve and many people simply don't like to think about it.
                When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).


                  Had a few things going on the last few months but I decided to download the title deed off the Gov website to see who was on the deeds of my nans house.

                  My nan and uncle are both on it so I assume I have now been screwed out of my dads share? Do you think its worth going down the legal root?

                  Not that me and him have spoken about it but I can't believe he's done this without even discussing it. I really didn't think he would do this. Come Jan if he does not volunteer the info to me and him will have words



                    If you phone up the landregistry they will tell you if your Nan had taken legal advice before putting your uncle's name on the title deeds. If she didn't take legal advice, they would, with your Nan's permission, reverse this.


                      Nice one. Thanks


                        Sticking to the original question - if a will has gone through probate then anyone can pay to see it. The advice set out here will be helpful

                        As the nan is dead the ownership of the house cannot now be easily changed.

                        The uncle may have been paying into the house and in any case no-one has the right to an inheritance. She may have decided to change her will because she thought her son needed more help than her grandchildren.

                        It's possible undue influence was exerted to induce a change in the will so there is a possible basis for legal action but legal advice would be needed.


                          I didn't realize you could check for probate on the UK Gov site. I have searched and she is not in there so I am sure he is up to something


                            It takes several months to move the will to probate and then more time to publish it.

                            There being two people on the deeds doesn't necessarily mean that the survivor inherits it all.
                            There are two ways of jointly owning property: tenants in common and joint tenants.

                            If the two people own the property as tenants in common they both own their own share of the property and your grandmother's will hopefully says what she wants to happen to her share.
                            If the two people owned the property as joint tenants, the survivor already owns all of it, and the will is academic as far as the property is concerned.
                            When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                            Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).


                              I know this was ages ago. I left it as my sister didn't want any aggravation or fall out with anyone and deep down I thought to myself my uncle won't rip us off. Anyway Friday I told my sister to get out the details of the solicitor handling the probate as it's the same people who did the 'trust' for us. I emailed them and said who I was and its been well over a year so what's happening and they replied this:

                              Yes I agree its taking longer than usual, can you check with your uncle if he holds any original of your grandfather and grandmother as we don’t seem to have any originals.

                              If you could ask him to post them recorded delivery to me that would be much appreciated.

                              Kind Regards

                              Now I wasn't 100% sure what he meant by 'originals' so I replied saying original what 'will' or 'probate' papers? And he then said:

                              I will write to him today. Best you don’t get involved but we need ORIGINALS.

                              Why should I not get involved? Everytime I called my uncle it felt like he was stringing me along and kept saying it's all in hand but was always vague. And now why is this solicitor being all secret squirrel. I was going to call my uncle tomorrow and just say look what's going on with my dads share and see what his reaction is.


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